Have you or a loved one received a letter or a call from a detective about violating Vehicle Code Section 20002, also known as hit and run? You need a passionate, aggressive, and experienced Beverly Hills hit and run accident lawyer to protect your interests and ensure the best possible outcome for your case.
Let the attorneys at Gould & Jefferson of Beverly Hills handle the communications with the prosecutor or detective — it can make all the difference in the world when it comes to your hit and run charges. You don’t want what was a minor accident to turn into significant criminal charges. Call (310) 899-9529 to schedule a free one-hour consultation with our knowledgeable hit and run attorneys in Beverly Hills today.
What Is a Hit and Run in California?
Typically, a hit-and-run accident is one in which a person who has been driving a vehicle has failed to stop and exchange information with the person they hit, as required by law. A simple hit and run can turn a basic accident into a criminal offense. Depending on the facts and circumstances, it can be charged as a misdemeanor or felony. If there is no injury involved, it is generally filed as a misdemeanor. If there is, it instantly becomes a felony.
Common Questions About Hit and Runs in Beverly Hills
Our clients frequently ask similar questions about hit-and-run accidents, such as:
- Is it still considered a hit and run if it was not my fault?
- What if the damage was extremely minimal?
- How can they track me down?
The reality is that whether it’s your fault or somebody else’s, you must stop and exchange information with the other party involved. Let your insurance company sort out the other details. If you believe you are not at fault and you have been injured as a result, you may be entitled to significant compensation.
Even if the damage is extremely minimal, you should play it safe and exchange your driver’s license and insurance information. The consequence for not providing information may very well be charged as a criminal offense — no matter how minimal the damage is.
You can be tracked by way of your license plate number. Additionally, depending on where your accident occurred, there are street cameras and other types of surveillance in places you would never expect that can record your vehicle’s information. Bystanders or people in the immediate area can also take down your information.
What Does the Prosecutor Need to Prove?
Any time you are charged with a crime, a prosecutor needs to have a good faith belief that they can proceed on the charge and prove it “beyond a reasonable doubt.” For a hit and run, a prosecutor is required to show two things: that an accident occurred and resulted in damage to someone’s person or property and that you knowingly left the scene of said accident.
What Are the Consequences of a Hit and Run in Los Angeles County?
Misdemeanor hit and run charges are punishable by a maximum of six months in county jail, up to a $1000 fine, and up to three years of summary probation. You can also be hit with two points on your driving record, causing a rise in your insurance rates. If it is a misdemeanor hit and run with injury, then you face at least 90 days in county jail and a maximum of one year. Felony hit and runs with injuries can be up to four years in prison.
This is why it is important to reach out to a Los Angeles County hit-and-run accident lawyer to maximize your chances of success and minimize your exposure to possible jail/prison time, fines, and more. Call Gould & Jefferson of Beverly Hills at (310) 899-9529.
Los Angeles County Felony Hit-and-Run Lawyer
If your hit and run accident caused an injury, you are likely facing felony charges under Vehicle Code Section 20001. The consequences for a felony hit and run can be severe — often resulting in jail time or even prison time, depending on the facts and circumstances.
The requirements are similar to that of a misdemeanor hit and run, but a felony hit and run also necessitates the knowledge that the accident resulted in physical injury to another individual. This knowledge can be actual or constructive. In other words, if you knew or even should have known that someone was injured, that is enough.
For example, if the impact of the accident was so severe that your car was a “total loss” and you fled the scene, the prosecutor will try to argue that you should have known that someone was injured as a result of your actions.
Call Our Experienced Hit-and-Run Lawyers in Beverly Hills
If you or a loved one have been involved in a hit-and-run accident, call our assertive hit-and-run accident attorneys in Beverly Hills today to guide you through the legal process. Even if you have not been charged, you may be under investigation. Having strong legal representation can make all the difference in the world.
Call Gould & Jefferson for a free one-hour consultation with our professional team of hit-and-run accident lawyers in Beverly Hills.